G?len Organization 'Has Schools in Bulgaria' - Turkish Ambassador
The movement of US-based Islamic cleric Fethullah G?len is running schools in a number of countries including Bulgaria, Turkey's Ambassador to Sofia has said.
Mr S?leyman G?k?e has also warned that "some academic circles, political representatives and experts" in Bulgaria were unsatisfied with the coup's failure, but also had "manipulative" ideas. He has not elaborated.
He has told the Bulgarian National Television that G?len's organization, accused by the government of being behind the thwarted coup attempt in Turkey, has already raised "one or two generations" of people in all systems in his country that allow them to be beyond the constitutional order.
"This is a criminal act, but is undoubtedly linked to the group of G?len and is a terrorist act," he has made clear.
Experts and journalists who back Turkey's government have long maintained that the education system in parts of Southern Bulgaria (where much of the country's Muslim minority lives) is "infiltrated" by members of "FET?".
Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the government refer to the so-called Hizmet movement as "G?lenist Terrorist Organization" or "FET?" and accuses it of running a "parallel state".
This comes a day after Mr G?k?e announced that coup plotters had actually intended to prevent the arrests of thousands of soldiers and judges across the country that were carried out over the weekend.
He has now reiterated that the attempt was a result of the fact G?lenists felt their "sense of security" was being violated and had been turning aggressive since Turkey launched trials against some of them in 2011.
Commenting on the detentions, he has there were more people involved in the organization or execution of the coup, estimating their numbers were up to 10 000.
A second coup attempt is unlikely, Mr G?k?e has opined.
He has denied some EU officials' suggestions that Ankara had already prepared an "arrest list" which it started to implement as soon as the coup was foiled.
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